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What is zero hour in Indian Parliament 2020 See Latest Update

Filed in current affairs, Education by on November 10, 2020

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What is zero hour in Indian Parliament 2020 See Latest Update.

What is Zero Hour: Zero hour could generally mean midnight, or a time for a particular event to take place, like a military operation or something of that sort.  

But the Indian Parliament have some other ideas whenever this two words are mentioned. You are just a paragraph away from finding out what these ideas are.

what is zero hour

In Indian parliamentary system, Zero Hour is the time when Members of Parliament (MPs) can raise Issues of Urgent Public Importance.

For raising matters during the Zero Hour, MPs must give the notice before 10 am to the Speaker/ Chairman on the day of the sitting.

The notice must state the subject they wish to raise in the House. However, Speaker, has the power to either allow or decline a Member to raise a matter of importance.

Just so you know, ‘Zero Hour’ is not mentioned in the Rules of Procedure. This makes it an informal device available to MPs to raise matters without any notice 10 days in advance.

This is because, generally, the matters are of public importance and such matters cannot wait for 10 days.

Here is Why it’s called Zero Hour

In the Indian parliamentary parlance, it is the time gap between the end of Question Hour and the beginning of the regular business. Another rationale is that it starts at 12 noon which is the zero hour of the clock.

Difference between Question Hour and Zero Hour.

Question Hour:

The question hour is a slotted first hour of each working day where the members ask questions and the ministers are duty bound to give answers.

During this hour, the parliamentarians hold Government accountable for their actions. The government is put on to trial for the act of omission or commission while acting under official duty.

During Question hour, questions must follow any of the four kinds mentioned in the rules of procedure.

A starred question (distinguished by an asterisk) requires an oral answer and hence supplementary questions can follow.

In a single day around 20 such questions are addressed and questioning member is allowed to ask up to 2 supplementary questions in response.

At the same time other members can also ask question on pertaining issue but it is up to discretion of speaker.

An unmarked question, will require a written answer and hence, supplementary questions cannot follow. Such questions need to be submitted in 15 days advance. Around 200 such questions are addressed daily during session.

A short notice question is one that is asked by giving a notice of less than ten days. It is answered orally.

A private member question may be addressed to a private member if the subject matter of the question relates to some Bill, resolution or other matter connected with the business of the House for which that member is responsible.

Zero Hour:

Zero Hour is not mentioned in the Rules of Procedure unlike the question hour. It is an Indian innovation which has been in existence since 1962.

Hence, it is an informal device available to the members of the Parliament to raise matters without any prior notice as earlier said.

The Zero Hour starts immediately after the question hour and lasts until the agenda for the day (ie, regular business of the House) is taken up. In essence, the time gap between the question hour and the agenda is what we call the zero hour.

This has already been said but for emphasis; Zero hour usually starts at 12 noon whereby MPs can raise their questions about issues of urgent public importance.

For raising matter in Zero Hour, interested MP must give a notice before 10 AM to the speaker or Chairman (depending on the Parliament) on the day of raising issue.

The Presiding officer may decide to grant on merit at own discretion based on merit and importance of the issue.

When Zero Hour was introduced into Indian Parliamentary System.

During the sixties, members of parliament used to raise many pressing issues of national and global import after Question Hour.

On such an occasion, a member raised an issue about announcements of policy made by ministers outside the parliament when parliament was in session.

This act caused an idea among other members who called for another provision for discussing important matters in the House.

This led to the innovation that brought about the invention of Zero Hour in the field of parliamentary procedures and has been in existence since 1962.

Now you have a better knowledge and can relate it to the Indian parliament. Share this article with friends and leave a comment below.

CSN Team.

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